Sunday, November 10, 2019

Jaipur District


Jaipur District at a Glance

General
·                     District:                       Jaipur
·                     Headquarters:           Jaipur
·                     State:                           Rajasthan
Area in Sq Km (Census 2011) 
·                     Total:                          11143
·                     Rural:                         10353
·                     Urban:                        790
Population (Census 2011) 
·                     Population:                6626178
·                     Rural:                         3154331
·                     Urban:                        3471847
·                     Male:                          3468507
·                     Female:                      3157671
·                     Sex Ratio (Females per 1000 males):         910
·                     Density (Total, Persons per sq km):            595
Constituencies (ECI) 
·                     Assembly:       19
·                     Lok Sabha:     2
Jaipur District is a district of the state of Rajasthan in Northern India. The city of Jaipur, which is Rajasthan's capital and largest city, is the district headquarters. It is the tenth most populous district in India (out of 640).
According to the 2011 census Jaipur district has a population of 6,663,971, roughly equal to the nation of Libya or the US state of Washington. This gives it a ranking of 10th in India (out of a total of 640). The district has a population density of 598 inhabitants per sq. km. (1,550/sq mi). Its population growth rate over the decade 2001-2011 was 26.91%. Jaipur has a sex ratio of 909 females for every 1000 males, and a literacy rate of 76.44%.


PLACES OF INTEREST


City Palace

City Palace, Jaipur
One of the historic landmarks of the city, City Palace is situated right at the center of the city and is made of grey-white marble stone. It was built by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II between 1729 and 1732 A.D. The king built the outer walls of the palace and his successors made the additions which continued till the 20th century.
City Palace includes the Chandra Mahal (palace) and the Mubarak Mahal (palace). At the entrance of the palace, there are two elephants made of marble that guard the passageway. Chandra Mahal houses a museum which has a rare collection of various types of Rajasthani dresses, Mughal armoury and Rajput weapons and swords of different shapes and sizes.
The museum also consists of an art gallery with a collection of paintings, royal belongings, carpets and astronomical works in Persian, Latin and Sanskrit, which were developed by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II.

Jantar Mantar


Jantar Mantar, Jaipur

Jantar Mantar is one of Jai Singh's five striking observatories. Built with stone and marble, its perplexing instruments whose settings and shapes are exactly and logically outlined explain the medieval Indian Astronomy.
The Ram Yantras, utilized for measuring heights, are one-of-a-kind. This is the biggest of the five observatories established by Sawai Jai Singh II in India. It has been recorded in UNESCO world heritage sites.
Major Yantras or instruments that one can find here are: 'Dhruva', Small 'Samrat', 'Narivalya', The Observer's Seat, ‘Raj’, 'Unnathamsa', Small 'Kranti', 'Disha', 'Dakshina', Large 'Samrat', 'Rashivalayas', 'Jai Prakash', Small 'Smash', Large 'Slam Yantra', Small 'Smash', 'Diganta' and Large ‘Kranti’.

Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal, Jaipur

Hawa Mahal, also known as ‘Palace of Winds’, was built by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh in 1799 A.D. Ustad Lal Chand was the designer of the palace.
The palace was designed in the form of Lord Krishna’s crown. There are 953 small windows in the palace, known as ‘Jharokhas’.
The reason for the king to build this palace was to let the royal ladies see the streets of the city and observe day-to-day life without being seen by any outsider.

Albert Hall

Albert Hall, Jaipur

Albert Hall is the oldest museum of Rajasthan and is located in Jaipur city. The Museum is located inside Ram Niwas Bagh opposite to New Gate.
It was designed by Sir Samuel Swinton Jacob and was built by Maharaja Ram Singh and was opened for general public in 1887. The museum is the finest example of Indo-Saracen architecture.
Maharaja Ram Singh wanted the place to be a Town Hall. His successor Raja Madho Singh II, however, decided to give it a shape of a museum and included the hall as a part of Ram Niwas Bagh. Albert hall is also known as “Government Central Museum”.
Jal Mahal

Jal Mahal, Jaipur


One of the biggest tourist attractions Jal Mahal, also known as ‘Water Palace’, is a palace situated in the middle of Man Sagar Lake.
Maharaja Jai Singh II renovated the place in the 18th century and utilized the palace as a hunting lodge. One can hire a boat from the shore and visit the palace.
Jal Mahal has beautifully decorated hallways on the first floor. The palace also houses a “Chameli Bagh”.
Across the lake, one can find hills, ancient forts and temples.

Amber Fort

Amber Fort, Jaipur

Also known as “Amer”, this place served as the capital for Kachhwaha Rajputs. The fort houses palaces, gardens, halls and temples which were built by Raja Man Singh, Raja Jai Singh and Sawai Jai Singh. To reach the fort, there is a steep road.

It is a place of great tourist attraction wherein the tourists can hire elephants to reach the top of the fort. There is a Shila Mata temple in the premises of the Amer fort. The Idol of Shila Mata was brought from Jessore in East Bengal (now in Bangladesh) by Raja Man Singh.


Royal Entrance to Amber Fort

The palace has a pillared hall which is known as ‘Deewan-e-Aam’ and the ‘Ganesh Pole’. As we move further inside, there is a garden known as ‘Sukh Niwas’ and ‘Jas Mandir’. Jas Mandir is a fine example of the mix of Mughal architecture and Rajput designs. Raja Man Singh had built the older structures in the 16th century.

M P Birla Planetarium

M P Birla Planetarium

Equipped with the latest mechanized projection framework, the planetarium offers out-of-the-box audio-visual educational entertainment. A science museum is also a part of this.
The planetarium regularly holds sky-shows to drive out the heavenly myths, broadcast the basic ideas of Astronomy and also train the professionals to be glad about the splendour of the night sky. The topics include mysteries of cosmos, evolution of Earth, exploration of Mars and other planets. Interactive sessions are held after the sky-shows.

The planetarium organizes activities of ‘Amateur Astronomers Association’, which include astrophotography, telescope fabrication and organizing sky-watch sessions.


  
Galtaji

Galta ji Complex

Around 10 km away from Jaipur city, Galtaji is a pilgrimage for Hindus in a village called Khaniya-Balaji. There are a number of temples around Galtaji amidst the hills which surround Jaipur city.
There is a natural spring which emerges from the top of the hill filling a number of sacred Ponds (kunds) in which the pilgrim take a holy bath.
From the temple located at the hilltop, one can see the mesmerising view of Jaipur city. It is said that Galtaji was named after a Saint “Galav”, who used to live here and practice meditation and performed “Tapasya”.

Laxmi Narayan Temple (Birla Mandir)

Laxmi Narayan Temple

Laxmi Narayan temple, also known as ‘Birla temple’, is situated at the foot of the hill of Moti Doongri.
It is a temple made of white marble and is another place of tourist attraction in the city.

Nahargarh Fort

Part view of Nahargarh Fort

Nahargarh fort is located beyond the hills of Jaigarh fort. It is believed that Nahargarh was once the royal residence of Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II. Nahargarh stands on the edge of the Aravalli Hills, overlooking the pink city of Jaipur. The view of the city from the fort is impressive. Along with Amer Fort and Jaigarh Fort, Nahargarh once formed a strong defense ring for the city.
The fort was originally named Sudarshangarh, but it became known as Nahargarh, which means 'abode of tigers'.
Most of the part of the fort is in ruins now though the buildings constructed by Sawai Ram Singh II and Sawai Madho Singh II still exist.


Sargasuli

Sargasuli


Sargasuli is also known as ‘IsarLat’. It is a tower which was built by Maharaja Ishwari Singh as a memorable after one of his victories.


Maharaja Sawai Ishwari Singh defeated Madho Singh in the battle. The war took place because of some internal disputes between Maharaja Sawai Ishwari Singh and Madho Singh.
The tower was built as a sign of victory. You can have a look at the whole Jaipur city from this tower as it is situated at the heart of the city. Jaipur is a harmonious blend of culture, education and religion.

Sargasuli is the highest building of Jaipur and is situated on the western side of Tripolia Bazaar.

Govind Devji Temple

Govind Dev ji Temple


At the center of the sprawling Jai Niwas Garden towards the north of the Chandra Mahal is the temple of Lord Krishna.
The temple doesn’t have any towers to support the roof which makes it a building of utmost attraction for the tourists.
The idol of Govind Devji, initially introduced in a temple of Vrindavan, was reinstalled here by Sawai Jai Singh-II as his family god.

Sisodia Rani Ka Bagh


Sisodia Rani Palace

Along the street to Agra through a thin gauge in the southern eastern corner of the walled city, a few gardens were built by the Kings in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
The biggest and the most renowned is the garden built by Sawai jai Singh II for his Sisodia queen. It comprises of layered multilevel gardens with fountains and painted pavilions.

Jaigarh Fort


Jaigarh Fort

Jaigarh fort is located on the cape called ‘Cheel ka Teela’ on the Aravali hills. The fort was constructed by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II in 1726 A.D. It was built with the vision of securing Amer Fort from enemy attacks and is also known as ‘Victory Fort’.
The total length of Jaigarh fort is around 3 km from north to south and has a width of around 1 km. It is one of the few military structures of Medieval India.
It houses royal residences, gardens, open and secured water reservoirs, a silo, an arsenal, an all around arranged gun foundry, a few temples, a tall tower and a monster-mounted cannon – The Jai Ban - the biggest in the nation.

Gaitore

Gaitore

Located off the Jaipur-Amber street, Gaitore is the last resting place for the Maharajas of Jaipur. Set in a valley, the cenotaphs of the previous rulers comprise of Chhatri or umbrella-molded commemorations.
The most special one is Jai Singh's Chhatri because of the carvings that have been utilized to adorn it.

Moti Doongri

Moti Dungri Fort & Palace

It is believed to be a replica of a Scottish castle and exists on the hilltop. This place is believed to be once a residence of Maharani Gayatri Devi. It is also said that Maharaja Madho Singh’s son had occupied this place in the past.


Vidyadharji ka Bagh
Vidyadhar ji ka bagh


Vidyadhar Ji ka Bagh is located at Ghat ki Guni. One of Jaipur's best-preserved gardens, this picturesque garden is aesthetically designed and was built in the memory of Jaipur's chief Architect, Vidyadhar Bhattacharya. Apart from the crystal waters, the tranquil lakes, flower beds and well-maintained gardens, the Vidyadhar Garden has a lot to offer. Nestled in the lap of a popular valley in Jaipur, the garden offers a panoramic view of the city and is the pride of Jaipur's significant heritage and culture. The garden was strategically built to the decrees of the ancient 'Shilpa Shasthra' and is situated close to the Sisodia gardens.

The garden is the perfect amalgamation of contemporary Hindu and Mughal styles with its wonderful, sylvan lakes, terraced lawns, fountains and the majestic pavilions that house Lord Krishna's murals and paintings. Managed by the Government of Rajasthan, the Vidyadhar Garden is a vast expanse of imperial architecture and dazzling greenery. Presently, the place is used to host private get-togethers.

Hathi Gaon (Elephant Village)


Hathi Gaon

Hathi Gaon is located at the foot of the Amber palace hills. The place was built for the elephants of the king and their Mahouts.
The design involved first structuring the landscape first to create a series of water bodies to harvest the rain runoff, as this is the most crucial resource in the desert climate of Rajasthan. The idea of the site planning was to mould a structure and system that would help regenerate the landscape in a decade to approximate the tropical landscapes that are the natural habitat for elephants.

Samode Palace


Samode Palace

Nestled in the Aravalli Hills, Samode Palace is located at a distance of 40 km from Jaipur city. The palace is known to feature a unique blend of Rajput and Mughal architecture. Also, the palace boasts some of the finest frescoes and mirror-work that can be seen in the entire state. This 500- year old palace holds the essence of the rich and glorious heritage of the country till today. The palace has been featured in a number of Bollywood and Hollywood Movies.
Samode Palace is counted among India’s most beautiful and romantic heritage hotels in India. The palace hotel is known to offer a tranquil and luxurious ambience. The hotel is also famous for its modern hospitality, accommodation, services, cuisine and amenities. Guests get to indulge in activities like elephant polo, camel safari, horse safari and jeep safari.

Sambhar
Sambhar is one of the popular tourist destinations of the district. It is located at a distance of 94 km from the main city. The place was ruled by many rulers in the past like Rajputs, Sindhias, Marathas and Mughals. It is famous for its good quality salt and is considered to be one of the perfect destinations for visitors for rejuvenation. The place houses Shakambhari Devi temple, Sambhar Palace, Devayani Pond and a small town Naliasar.


Sambhar Lake

Famous Sambhar Lake is also a part of this place which is the main source of salt for the State and for the country. It was leased to the British by the rulers of Jaipur and Jodhpur in 1870 and after Independence it came directly under the State government’s ownership. 

Presently, the lake is managed by ‘Sambhar Salts Limited’, owned jointly by Hindustan Salts and the Government of Rajasthan.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Jaisalmer District


Jaisalmer District at a Glance


General
·                     District:                       Jaisalmer
·                     Headquarters:           Jaisalmer
·                     State:                           Rajasthan
Area in Sq Km (Census 2011) 
·                     Total:                          38401
·                     Rural:                         38331
·                     Urban:                        70
Population (Census 2011) 
·                     Population:               669919
·                     Rural:                         580894
·                     Urban:                        89025
·                     Male:                          361708
·                     Female:                      308211
·                     Sex Ratio (Females per 1000 males):         852
·                     Density (Total, Persons per sq km):            17
Constituencies (ECI) 
·                     Assembly:       2
·                     Lok Sabha:     0

Jaisalmer District is a district of Rajasthan state in western India. The city of Jaisalmer is the administrative headquarters of the district. It is approx. 289 km from Jodhpur city and 559 km from Jaipur city. As of 2011, it is the least populous district of Rajasthan.
It is the largest district of Rajasthan and third largest in the country in area. Jaisalmer District lies in the Thar Desert, which straddles the border of India and Pakistan. It is bound on the northeast by Bikaner District, on the east by Jodhpur District, on the south by Barmer District, and on the west and north by Pakistan.
The length of international border attached to the district is 464 km.
The climate is dry and healthy. Throughout Jaisalmer only rain crops, such as bajra, jawar, motif, til, etc., are grown; spring crops of wheat, barley, etc., are very rare.



PLACES OF INTEREST

THE GOLDEN FORT
The Golden Fort or "Sonar Kila", built of sandstone of the Jurrassic period on the Trikuta Hill ( the tripple peaked hill ). It grows out of a rock in an undulating sea of sand. The imposing fort is awe-inspiring, protected by rugged high walls, approachable through four successive gates, the Akhaiy Pol, the Ganesh Pol, the Suraj Pol and the Hawa Pol.

Panoramic view of Jaisalmer Fort

The palaces of the rulers built atop the main entrance, from an imposing edifice crowned by a huge umbrella of metal mounted on a stone shaft. The fort also houses many old Hindu as well as Jain temples and beautifully carved havelis. The entire living area is well protected within the ramparts of the fort.

The living area developing outside the fort

Jaisalmer Fort is the second oldest fort in Rajasthan, built in 1156 AD by the Rajput Rawal (ruler) Jaisal from whom it derives its name, and stood at the crossroads of important trade routes (including the ancient Silk road).


Front view of Jaisalmer Fort

With the advent of British rule, the emergence of maritime trade and the growth of the port of Bombay led to the gradual economic decline of Jaisalmer. After independence and the Partition of India, the ancient trade route was totally closed, thus permanently removing the city from its former role of importance in international commerce.


PATAWA HAVELI


Patawa Haveli


One of the most exquisite buildings in the walled city, which truly exemplifies the architectural style typical of erstwhile Rajputana. It is five storied high and the extensive corridors and chambers are supported by intricately carved pillars.




NATHMAL KI HAVELI


Nathmal ki Haveli


The haveli was  constructed by Lalu and Hathi, two brothers of the Prime Minister of erstwhile State, Nathmalji, in 19th century. The most interesting fact is that the brothers worked separately, one on the right side and the other on the left side, the result is a absolute symphony epitomizing the side by side symmetry during construction. The haveli is richly carved and the inner chambers are decorated with miniature paintings.


MANDIR PALACE

The Mandir Palace


The excellent palace complex located near Amar Sagar gate is the house of former royal family. The Tazia Tower rising from the palace is the landmark of the town. The building forms are interesting and the facades are richly carved.


SALIM SINGH KI HAVELI


Salim Singh ki Haveli

The five storied structure dominates the skyline of the walled city due to its form. It was built some 200 years age by Salim Singh, a powerful Chief Minister of Jaisalmer. The haveli begins with a narrow structure below with an elaborate projecting balcony on the top storey. It is distinguished by the blue cupola roof.


GADSISAR LAKE


Gadsisar Lake


This rainwater lake was once the major supplier of potable water in the town. Today it is a big attraction for the picnickers in the desert city. Sacred shrines and well-laid gardens flank the lake. A varied collection of beautiful brides can be observed fluttering about over here.



AMAR SAGAR LAKE (Location: 7 K.M. in the western outskirts of Jaisalmer)



Amar Sagar Lake (Photo Credit: TripAdvisor.com)


Amar Sagar is a small and beautiful lake cum Oasis and is adjacent to a 17th Century palace called the Amar Singh Palace. Maharawal Akhai Singh built this palace in honor of one of his predecessors Amar Singh. Next to the palace are pavilions with a large stairs leading down to the Amar Sagar Lake. This haveli has been constructed in the pattern of apartments. The Amar Sagar is a five story high haveli and is famous for its murals. Wherever you go in this haveli, you will notice beautiful murals painted with delicate efforts. You can find many of wells and ponds in the surrounding which have a royal air about them. There is an old Shiva temple in the complex itself. Amar Singh built this because he was supposed to be an ardent follower of Lord Shiva, a Hindu God related to destruction.

KULDHARA (Distance : 27 kms west of Jaisalmer)


The ruins of Kuldhara Village


The Village kuldhara was formed by a Paliwal person named Kuldhar and after his name the village is known as Kuldhara. The Village is now abandoned and behind this there were so many stories in the air among these a very popular and strong one is as follows.

The Deewan of that time, Salim Singh, was a very rude and sadist personality. To get rid of all his atrocities, the villagers of 84 villages near-by Kuldhara took a bitter decision to leave the place on a particular day and they did it and left the place all together. Because of this the village is now abandoned. However, the village is known for its architecture and water conservation techniques.

The Magsaysay award winner Mr. Rajendra Singh also put efforts to adopt the water conservation techniques of this village because it is an example of better water conservation techniques. The village was having 5000 population and there was only one temple which shows that there was uniformity in the vision and where there is uniformity there is a path to success.

LUDARWA (Distance: 13 km North-west of Jaisalmer)

Ludarwa Temple

It is also known as ancient Capital of Jaisalmer, but it is more famous for the Jain temples and Kalp Vraksh (The wish tree). The architecture and carving on the stones is fabulous. This place is having very high religious value for the Jain community, the Ludarwa being a major religious place. Every year many Jains visit the place for worshipping. The whole temple is having very fine carving on every piece of stone used to construct the temple.

BARABAGH (Distance: 7 kms North of Jaisalmer)

Bara Bagh Complex

Bada Bagh, which literally means ‘Big Garden’, is located on the Ramgarh road. It was commissioned by Maharawal Jait Singh in the early 16th century and completed by his son Lunakaran after his death. The site itself consists of a tank, a dam and a garden. Nearby you will find the Govardhan Stambh (pillar) on which are engraved the names of the dam and the water tank which are called the Jait Bandh and the Jaitsar respectively, dedicated to the man who constructed them.

The Jait Bandh is a colossal structure, about 1,200 feet in length and 350 feet in width and built out of solid blocks of stone, as are the step wells. On the nearby hill lie the imperial chhatris or cenotaphs of the rulers – a tribute to the valorous Bhatti dynasty. The oldest among them are the cenotaphs of Maharawal Jait Singh and his predecessor Devidas who reigned from 1470-1506.

The newest cenotaph is that of Jawahar Singh, who was Maharawal at the time of Indian independence. Jawahar Singh’s chhatri was left incomplete as his son died within a year of his accession to the throne which was considered a bad omen by the family. From then on the practice of building a valedictory memorial to the ruling clan has been discontinued.

SAM SAND DUNES (Distance : 45 kms west of Jaisalmer)

Sand Dunes (Image Credit: tripmyindia.com)
Undoubtedly the most well known destination in Jaisalmer after the ‘golden fort’, the Sam Sand dunes are a tourist hot spot in more ways than one. 3 km long, 1 km wide and as much as half a kilometer high, the dunes are as treacherous as they are scenic. The rippling sand miles upon miles at Sam are spell binding, alluring the tourists from all over the world. The shifting sand dunes are spread all over and ever changing.
The camel safaris give one a firsthand feel of the desert life. The place is also a photographers’ delight and a popular site for shooting of feature films. The sunset point is an unforgettable experience. There is no point coming to the Thar Desert if you don't go for the Desert Safari. That is why Sam sand dunes are becoming the major attraction in Jaisalmer. This is the closest place from where you can lose yourself in 'the Great Thar Desert'. Sam has a truly magnificent stretch of sweeping dunes, with sparse or no vegetation. 
The best way to get here, of course, is on camelback. Join a camel caravan at Jaisalmer on your Rajasthan tours and ride along the breathtaking crests and troughs. Enjoy the romance of solitude as your camel takes you deep in the hearts of the Thar Desert. Put yourself in the camp and experience the sun setting behind the horizon. Organize a bonfire with the fellow tourists in the night and enjoy the rustic and earthy music and dance of Rajasthan.
In the month of February/March, this whole place turns into a cultural hub. The desert festival organized amid these dunes is the showcase of Rajasthani culture as a whole. Open-air cultural extravaganzas, puppet shows, folk dance performances, camel races, competitions and general festivities mark this annual event that is held with great pomp and show at the Sam Sand dunes in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan.

AKAL WOOD FOSSILS PARK

Akal wood fossil park
Millions of years ago, the ocean submerged Jaisalmer, and the discovery of seashells here emphasizes that belief. The wood fossils at Akal (17 km off the city on the Jaisalmer-Barmer road) are an example of the fossilization archaeologists say occurred 180 million years ago. The fossils are said to represent non-flowering plants and provide a clue to the age of the deposition of sediments. At nearby Kandiala the deposits are probably older, but historians have been unable to ascribe a date to it.